Khanna Lab

Rajesh Khanna, PhD, MSc

Rajesh Khanna, PhD, MSc

NYU Pain Research Center

Department of Molecular Pathobiology
NYU College of Dentistry
Department of Neuroscience and Physiology
NYU Grossman School of Medicine


Rajesh Khanna earned a PhD in Physiology from the University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada where he also obtained his MSc in Pharmacology and a BSc in Toxicology. After completing a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)-funded postdoctoral fellowship in Physiology and Molecular Biology at the University of California, Los Angeles, he completed a fellowship in Cellular and Molecular Biology at the Toronto Western Research Institute in Toronto, Ontario. Dr. Khanna was appointed to a faculty position in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology at the School of Medicine at Indianapolis University Purdue University Indianapolis and the Stark neurosciences Institute. Early in his career at IUPUI, Dr. Khanna established a scientific program to investigate the mechanistic underpinnings of pain chronification, focusing on ion channels and their regulatory proteins. In 2013, Dr. Khanna was recruited to the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Arizona. Here his laboratory identified an elaborate network of regulation of nociceptive ion channels by cytosolic proteins, which his lab harnessed to design non-opioid compounds to curb pain; these discoveries lead to the founding of a start-up, Regulonix LLC, for these pursuits. In 2019, Dr. Khanna was named a Senior Member of the National Academy of Inventors. His laboratory has been funded continuously by the DOD and NIH since 2012. Dr. Khanna’s efforts as an educator and mentor were formally recognized at the University of Arizona when he was awarded the Outstanding Undergraduate Biology Research Program (UBRP) Faculty Mentor in 2016, the Honors College, UA Excellence in Mentoring Award in 2017, and the College of Medicine Faculty Mentoring Award in 2018 and 2021. In 2022 Dr. Khanna was recruited to New York University College of Dentistry to direct a basic science laboratory focused on the neurobiology of pain chronification and to direct the NYU Pain Research Center.

Findings from Dr. Khanna’s Pain Research laboratory have been reported in more than 180 scientific papers, reviews and chapters. This work holds potential to improve the quality of life for millions of Americans.